Pope Benedictus XVI at Les Invalides

Today the Pope spoke to Parisians at Les Invalides to tell us all we have become insatiably greedy. Speaking from behind a tableful of golden instruments of ceremony, hung with a banner that read “allons a la source de la vie” – we go to the wellspring of life (my translation) – he went on to tell us we behave like “pagans of antiquity” and he lost me.

Still, for a moment, Benedictus’ message of austerity was respected by one who values highly his quiet and aloof way of life as a valid criticism of the world I see before me.

But in the way that things invoke their opposite his speech made me remember that here in this impoverished place ministers live in beach mansions, drive a Bentley and openly advocate wealth.

So I wonder: why lay that complaint at the feet of people who live in communal efficiency, not in houses, and who make use of trains and buses? Parisians are exemplary city people who still know the importance of bakeries and big umbrellas.

Here is a window on Paris, if your hardware can take you there.

Who is Protestant Paulie to come out in defense of the French against this German Shepherd?

Who indeed?


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